This short-lived perennial plant is up to 3½' tall, branching occasionally. The stems are light green to dull reddish purple and they are heavily covered with long white hairs. The opposite leaves are up to 4" long and 3" across; they are oval-ovate or obovate and coarsely serrated along the margins. The whitish green leaves are covered with fine white hairs (especially on their lower sides), and they are either sessile or have short petioles. In addition to the pinnate venation, each leaf has a reticulated network of smaller veins. The upper stems terminate in hairy floral spikes. These spikes are 1-8" long and densely crowded with pink or lavender flowers (usually the latter). The floral spikes bloom from the bottom up; relatively few flowers are in bloom at the same time. Each flower is about ¼" across or a little wider, consisting of a short corolla with a narrow opening and 5 spreading lobes, a small calyx with narrow teeth, and the reproductive organs. The calyx is grayish green to reddish purple and hairy. There is no floral scent. The blooming period occurs from mid- to late summer, and lasts about 1½ months. Four brown nutlets are produced per flower. The root system consists of a taproot, which may tiller from the base (sending up multiple stems). This plant reproduces by reseeding itself.